Israeli-Palestinian conflict

In defense of Ilhan Omar

Silencing voices of dissent is not the American way:

A formal condemnation of anti-Semitism that is up for a vote in the House this week has touched off a furious debate between older House Democrats and their young liberal colleagues over whether Representative Ilhan Omar is being singled out for unfair treatment over her statements on Israel.

The resolution, likely to be voted on Thursday, grew out of Ms. Omar’s suggestion last week that pro-Israel activists were pushing “for allegiance to a foreign country” — a remark that infuriated leading Jewish members of the House, who say it played into the anti-Semitic trope of “dual loyalty.”

First of all, it needs to be made (crystal) clear that criticism of the State of Israel, especially in how it treats Palestinians in the Occupied Territories, does not automatically equate to anti-Semitism. Their actions in the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, do not remotely resemble democracy, regardless of your definition of such. All that being said, critics need to take the time to study historical anti-Semitic tropes and symbology, so they don't (maybe inadvertently) invoke them. Like the money issue, which is notorious for motivating pogroms against Jews for well over a thousand years. It happened in Nazi Germany in the 1930's, and it just happened again in Belgium of all places. But back to the Palestinian problem, and another one of Steve's boring anecdotes:

The Trump Effect: Israeli settlements in West Bank on steroids

The path to a lasting peace is being bricked over:

In 2017, 3,154 tenders were issued, up from just 42 during Obama's final year in office. In 2018, that number rose to over 3,800, the highest number by far since Peace Now started compiling the data in 2002. This sets the stage for a huge jump in construction in the near future.

"There's definitely a change of atmosphere. There's definitely a change of winds," said Oded Revivi, mayor of Efrat, a major settlement near Jerusalem, and the chief foreign envoy of the Yesha settlement council. Revivi said that Obama pressured Israel into greatly curtailing settlement activity. Now, he said, Israel is trying to make up for lost time.

There was a lot going on during the Obama administration to bring some sort of agreement to the table over this problem, and we came tantalizingly close in 2014:

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